Originally posted on May 29, 2007
My husband and I have been listening to Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University CD's in the car on our last few road trips. Last night on our way home from a weekend of visiting family in Chicago, we listened to the last lesson, "The Great Misunderstanding." Ramsey makes many great points, emphasizing that to be truly effective managers of our money, we have to have an open hand. It's a paradox, at least to the world, he says, that we gain more by giving away.
Ramsey ended the lesson by sharing a story about his daughter when she was in kindergarten. The teacher had asked each student to draw a picture of what they would do if given 100 dollars. (Ramsey reminded us that 100 dollars is like ten million to a 5 year-old.) The students' responses were compiled in a little booklet, and each kid brought a copy home. As the Ramseys flipped through the book, many children indicated that they wanted a swimming pool, a fancy car or a dollhouse. They were expecting a similar wish list item from their daughter, and were stunned when they turned to the page with her name on it. "If I had a hundred dollars," she said, "I would give it to the poor people."
My husband and I have been praying that our son (and any other children God blesses us with) would always be aware of the needs of others, and that they would be willing to share all that they've been given.
I would be interested to hear if/what you learned about financial stewardship as a kid, and if you have kids, how you are teaching (or plan to teach) them about this important issue.